Got a Question about School Funding?

If you have a question, please follow the link below to ask. You may submit your question anonymously, or request a personal response. Responses will be posted on the website or sent to you as soon as possible. Questions may be about:

  • School funding in general
  • Streetsboro funding specifically
  • Levy information, millages, etc.
  • Whatever else may be helpful to you!

Streetsboro City Schools Financial Q&A

Would Surround Care be shutdown as well as part of 4pm closures?

Currently Surround Care is a self-funded program from the tuition paid by parents. As long as it remains self-funded, it will remain open. However, if the levy fails in May, all areas of our operations will be evaluated for possible cuts.

What are the 2 levy items on the ballot in November for? Why do we have to keep doing renewals? What gets cut if those levies don't pass?

Both of the renewals are general operating renewals. One is for 3.5 mills (estimated $1,494,650) and the other is for 3.9 mills (estimated $1,743,523) totaling an estimated $3,238,173. Renewal operating levies generate dollars used for the operations of the district. Levy renewals happen due to a levy cycle. The renewals you are referring to expire every five years. In order for the district to keep these levies active, once expired or expiring they have to go up for renewal through voter approval. If one or both of these renewals were to fail, we would have to cut that dollar amount from our operating budget until a new levy was approved.

How was the district not cutting back for the last few years in an attempt to reduce the financial crisis that we are currently in?

We have added several elective programs throughout the past few years in order to enhance the education of our students and provide them with additional opportunities. The distict is actually lean in the core areas (and primary grades), but elective heavy (reason stated in first sentence). We have always critically analyzed the hiring of additional staff and made responsible decisions regarding the additions of new programming. If the levy fails in May, these additional opportunities are at risk of being cut.

Can you please advise what the cost difference is between last years busing routes vs this year?

This school year is still ongoing and there are still expenses associated with transportation that will continue for the remainder of the year. Therefore an analysis of this nature cannot be done until year end and all transportation costs have been incurred. We fully intend to analyze the costs along with significant feedback we have received this year regarding transportation and it is quite possible changes will be made for next year. We will work on creating an aggregate operating cost from last year and this year for comparison. However, this is not the most accurate way to measure costs associated with transportation from last year to this year.

I was reviewing the 5 Year Forecasts on the ODE website and noticed that Streetsboro didn’t report any Tangible Personal Property taxes for years 2018 through 2023. Can you elaborate?

TPP is reported in line 1.050 Property Tax Allocation in Streetsboro City School District's Five Year Forecast. Based on ODE's phase out model, the forecast assumes collections in FY 19 of $787,963, FY 20 of $516,879 and FY 21 of $245,796. With the assumption of a complete phase out by FY 22. Five Year Forecasts have a written narrative of methodology called assumptions. Those can be found on the ODE website and the District's can be found on our website as well. As for other District's reporting revenue in that line, after reading the assumptions it states that this is a PUP tax (Public Utility Property). Also in the other District's assumptions it is stated that TPP is reported in line 1.050 Property Tax Allocation.

Can you give an explanation of Permanent Improvement funds, specifically what they can and cannot be used for in the district?

Permanent Improvement funds can be used for the acquisition, construction, enlargement, renovation and financing of general on-going permanent improvements that have a life span of 5 years. Permanent Improvement funds cannot be used as operating funds. One example would be PI funds cannot pay for the salary of an employee.

Can you advise as to what the districts total legal fees were in 2016, 2017 and also for current YTD 2018?

Legal fees in FY 15-16 were $217,547.05, in FY 16-17 $245,280.85, in FY 17-18 $425,004.47, and current $129,574.37. We are currently projecting legal fees to be less than in previous years. However, this could easily change if new litigation is filed against the district.

Why are you leasing space to other organization for a "nominal fee that does not even remotely cover costs"? This is totally irresponsible based on your financial situation. You want taxpayers to fund the schools so others can use them at your loss? This should be illegal.

The board has established costs for renting different areas of our buildings. The fees help to cover any costs associated with extra cleaning and custodial overtime (if applicable). The goal is to allow the community to use the facilities (within reason) only when the use does not interfere with school-sponsored activities.

We have many quality teachers, how are we going to get our test scores up as a district? We need to openly address this and not avoid the topic. It is a topic of concern when voting for a levy in our household.

Test scores continue to be a focus for the district as well. We fully acknowledge there needs to be improvement. Currently we are engaged in several initiatives to address student achievement. All of our teachers in grades K-3 are currently involved in a project funded by ODE which focuses on changing the way we teacher reading. After year one, our district had better results than any other district in Ohio involved in the program. Over time, we are hopeful this will help student achievement in reading and help our test scores. In addition, we are having our teachers be more intentional with using online assessments in their classrooms throughout the year so students don't feel overwhelmed when they take the state test in April. Teachers are explaining what the tools are on the state assessments, explaining what they are used for and then have the students practice using the tools.

How will these cuts impact bussing?

Currently we do not have plans to change busing. However, if the levy fails in May busing will likely be reduced to State minimum. This means that only students in grades K-8 would be transported by bus and no student within a two mile driving distance of their school would be bussed. Also, all high school students would have to provide their own transportation to and from school. The Board of Education would have to approve this cost-saving measure.

What functions take place at the annex in the morning? Dropping my son off at the middle school, I notice the lights are on the annex. Would it not make sense to make cuts where you can? Why have lights on at 7:00am in the annex. It could save a couple dollars.

Currently our copy center is housed at the Annex and it is used during the day for staff development. When it is not used, we are making an effort to turn the lights off to save on electric. After 2:30 PM, the annex is used for wrestling, baseball and softball. Our custodians have been instructed to make sure all lights are turned off in areas that are not being used. Also, new schedules for heating/cooling and lights have been made and over the next few weeks the control systems will be reprogrammed. Essentially, we are turning down the heat in all the buildings during the day and a warm up schedules and shut down schedules are being tightened up. We are hoping this will show a savings in our utilities in all buildings.

There is much discussion regarding the levy cost based on a property value of $100,000. Is the $100,000 reference the Property Market Value (100%) or the Assessed (35%) Property Value?

Calculation of the levy cost based on a $100,000 home is calculated by taking $100,000 (value of the home) multiplied by 35% to determine the assessed value. For this example the assessed value would be $35,000. You then take the assessed value of $35,000 and multiply by the proposed millage. For this example, let's use 7.5 as the millage. So, $35,000 (assessed value) multiplied by 7.5 mils equals $262,500. Then take $262,500 and divide by 1000 to reach the impact of the property tax on a $100,000 home. For this example the impact would be $262.50.

In my parental opinion, I do feel that our children get too many chances to “fix” their answers on academic tests. They are allowed to take a math test (for example) and then fix the wrong answers after the test, in order to get a better grade. This then affects their test scores on State tests because they are so used to getting soooo many chances. They approach tests, with the thought that they can always “fix” their wrong answers. We should not be sitting at award ceremonies, where every student is an “A, B” student, at Defer. This is unrealistic. As a parent, I would like to see my children take their tests, get their grade, and that’s it. Even if they get a bad grade. No more chances.

Current educational research supports the idea that students learn at different times. Students are expected to know the state standards by the end of the academic year. If a student hasn't mastered a skilled in September, it doesn't mean they will never learn the skill. It means the teacher has until May to make sure they are proficient in that area. This concept of test corrections is used to see if students made a error in calculations/ideas or truly didn't understand the concept.

Regarding the upcoming levy, a few questions come to mind that could help residents: 1) explain what the levy money is used for and what it cannot be used towards, 2) I think a lot of people don't understand what a mil is, and how much money 1 mil generates. The schools could provide a breakdown of what this could cost residents on a monthly basis (you could have a chart, or direct them to a website), 3) If we passed a 10 mil levy, would that get us caught up to where we need to be? And would we have to pass another high mil levy after this one ends, to keep things operating where they should be? 4) What are the short and long term effects of the levy passing and failing? Lastly, marketing for the levy has to increase. A lot of people weren't aware of the November issue. I know part of the responsibility falls on residents to stay informed and be active, but not everyone does this. Could the schools or the levy committee send information flyers home about the levy (just facts, not asking them to vote "yes" or "no")? Continue to offer an online Q&A session with Mr. Daulbaugh, and hold some public meetings at each schools to showcase each building, and the services and educators each offers. The more channels we use to get information out, the more educated the public will be.

1. This levy will be an operating levy and if passed it can be used to fund district operations. District operations can range from an employee's salary to a chromebook. 2. One mil in Streetsboro generates $491,110. If your home is valued at $100,000 then 1 mil on that property would generate $35.00. 3. School district funding changes and funding schools is an ongoing process that is evaluated regularly. 4. The short and long term effects would have to be evaluated based on the millage that is decided by the Board of Education to place on the May ballot. The district plans to continue with the question/answer bank so that people can ask questions about the levy or school finances. Also, the levy committee is hoping to get more help from residents in order to get the word out. We welcome any feedback and ideas residents may have regarding getting information to the public.

In the past few years our district has added assistant superintendent and assistant principals in most if not all buildings. What is the yearly cost of these positions? In corporate downsizing, middle management is one of the first logical cuts.

The district did not add an assistant superintendent. Mrs. Curtis was already the director of curriculum, federal programs director, gifted coordinator and testing coordinator. When the superintendent had health issues, her title was changed to assistant superintendent and she was moved to a 260 day contract (from a 220). Additionally, when Wait Primary and Campus Elementary were combined there were two principals. When one left, we downsized to an assistant principal (from a full principal) and saved money. Also, when the district moved the 6th grade to the middle school, the Defer assistant principal moved to the middle school. When the assistant principal was at Defer, we did move her from half time to full time in anticipation of the move to the middle school (where a full time assistant is needed). There is no longer an assistant principal at Defer. The high school has always had an assistant principal. In summary, the district has reduced a principal to an assistant principal (when Wait and Campus combined) and moved the assistant principal at Defer from half time to full time when the position went to the middle school. Yearly salary costs for these positions are: Assistant Superintendent: $103,000, Elementary Assistant Principal: $81,600, Middle School Assistant Principal: $71,400, High School Assistant Principal: $88,217.

How much of our district operating funds supports the athletics program? The district sport fees are very low and could be increased so that the programs can be more self sustaining, if they are not already. I would imagine a sport like football incurs a significantly higher cost due to the equipment and uniforms alone. Are the football there sport fees higher versus other sports that do not require as much equipment? In general though does the money needed support the school athletics? While they are an important component, the programs should be sustaining the majority of their own operating costs.

In 2011, sports fees were approved by the Board of Education. High School sports fees are $150 per sport. Of the $150 in fees, $90 goes towards operating costs (General Fund) and $60 goes into the athletic account. Middle School sport fees are $100 per sport. Of the $100 in fees, $65 goes towards operating costs (General Fund) and $35 goes into the athletic account. In 2012, the Board of Education approved a $450 cap on sports fees. Operating funds (General Fund) mainly cover payment for coaches and gameworkers.

Why don't we sell the Stevenson property/Board property and move everyone from there and the board office to the annex?

The Stevenson property where our current technology hub is located as well as the treasurer's department is also the home to the controls for the lift station and the lift station (for waste to be pumped into the city sewer system) for Henry Defer Intermediate School and the Head Start Building adjacent to the house. We cannot sell this property without moving the controls to the lift station and the lift station. Also, we believe the Annex (old Middle School) will need to be used in the future to house students.

Are music, technology, art and PE classes required? Or are these classes in the position to be cut as well?

All areas (curriculum, services, operations, etc) are being considered for cuts. Specifically, the State of Ohio requires Physical Education to be taught by a licensed Physical Education teacher. Art and Music classes are not required at the elementary and middle grades.

Will all the schools potentially lose the Akron Children's Hospital clinic staff?

We are currently looking into reducing the nursing services we receive from Akron Children's Hospital in order to save money. We cannot completely eliminate the service.

I had this question after attending the School Board special meeting this past Wednesday. Does the calculated income from the levy is based solely on existing homes or are they also forecasting the future new homes in development. If my research and math is correct, there are 450-535 new homes in development or planned in Streetsboro. Most are in the range of $250-300k homes. That’s $374K-$468K on the conservative end of levy income. Is this included in the numbers currently being shared to the city? Just curious. Thank you.

The revenue collected from a levy is based solely upon the current property owners in the city. When new homes are built, the existing voted millage from levy's is spread out between all property owners. Thus, as new homes are built, the current voted millage goes down for homeowners (the amount of money you pay will go down as it is spread equally among all homeowners). The new millage for the levy in May can only be calculated on the current property owners in Streetsboro. While we know there are many new homes being built, we cannot account for those homes until they are sold and occupied. As I mentioned above, as new homes are sold and occupied, the voted millage from levies will be spread out among all homeowners (thus decreasing the tax burden).

What are the possible cuts for next year if it fails in May? Or is it too soon to say?

The menu of possible cuts will be presented to the board soon. We also plan to post these on our website.

The district has an athletic director that serves as maintenance supervisor also. He has an assistant supervisor two secretaries and middle school has athletic director. Wouldn't there be cost savings to district by cutting staffing in these dept. and no impact to students or classrooms.

We are currently looking at all areas in the district for potential cost savings; maintenance and athletics included. These potential cuts will be presented to the board soon and then posted on the website.

You say you are looking at copier paper - but have a 200k total budget for copiers/printers too. Have you looked at also reducing print cartridge costs?

We are currently looking at our contract with the company that provides our copiers and looking for ways to reduce expenditures in this area.

Have you looked an an energy audit/plan to reduce costs? Usually these are performed at a cost but paid out of the savings that the district accomplishes.

The district is currently in the beginning stages of having an energy audit completed.

I asked the question regarding the lights on in the annex at 7 am in the morning. Your answer does not answer the question. Using the annex as the copy center does not require lights on all night and in the am. Also maybe moving the copy center to each building. Secondly, you state its used for staff development in the afternoon. That does not address 7am. Lastly, you advise custodians to turn them off. That's our money and our kids education at risk when they choose not to listen to your advice. Your answer for this question is not very supportive of saving money.

A custodian works at the Annex in the mornings cleaning the areas used from the night before. All custodians have been instructed to begin turning off lights in areas they are not working in. The copy center is a center where large quantities of copies are made. It contains three large machines to do this work and when teachers utilize the copy center for larger jobs, there is a significant savings in the price per page. The copy center cannot be located in other buildings. There is not room for it elsewhere.

In regards to someone else's question of renting buildings out at a nominal fee. Why would you not increase the rate at which they are rented out. I realize it's a community thing and trying to help the community, however it seems as if the "renters" would understand the increase in cost to support "our school community" and what is best for the children of the future.

The district is currently analyzing the rates we charge to use our facilities. While no recommendation has been made yet, I would anticipate there will be an increase in rates for the use of our buildings.

Is there really a need for an assistant superintendent and assistant principals in each building ? Our district is not that large.

The Assistant Superintendent in Streetsboro performs the job duties that most districts have several individuals fulfilling. The Assistant Superintendent in Streetsboro performs the duties of the Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Federal Programs Director, the district Gifted Coordinator and the District Testing Coordinator. Normally, most of these jobs are filled by different employees in a district. Having all of these duties assigned to the Assistant Superintendent saves the district money. Also, we currently have an assistant principal at Streetsboro Elementary School, Streetsboro Middle School and Streetsboro High School. Due to enrollment and management of the buildings (discipline, evaluation, curriculum), assistant principals are needed in all three buildings. However, if the levy fails in May, we will have to evaluate all positions in the district.

Will the eighth graders next year go on the Washington D.C trip?

If the levy fails in May, the 8th grade trip to Washington D.C. trip would likely be canceled for next year.